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Ohio forward Ben Vander Plas (5) dribbles the ball during an exhibition basketball game against Capital University at Convocation Center in Athens, Ohio, Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021.

Men's Basketball: Fast reactions to Ohio's win over Cleveland State

CLEVELAND — Ohio defeated Cleveland State 67-56 in the Wolstein Center on Saturday night for its second-straight win to begin the season. Despite a sloppy performance in the first half, Ohio adjusted to Cleveland State’s up-close playstyle and retained a modest lead for the majority of the game.

Here are some fast reactions to Ohio’s 67-56 win over Cleveland State:

Sloppy first half

The first 20 minutes were not kind to Ohio. It went into halftime on a scoring drought that had lasted three-and-a-half minutes. It clung to a 10-point lead thanks to a similar drought by Cleveland State, but Ohio still sputtered into the locker room without much noise on offense.

Compared to their season opener, the Bobcats looked messy. Sloppy passes resulted in missed shots. Multiple Bobcats struggled to find a shot under the rim. Ohio started out of the gate slow, and Cleveland State often took advantage of that sluggishness.

Reliance on 3-pointers

Following a strong night of shooting beyond the arc against Belmont, the Bobcats decided to stick with what worked heading into Saturday. In the first half, 18 of Ohio’s 36 field goal attempts were made from 3-point range.

This dependency came back to bite Ohio, however. It shot just 36.1 percent from the field in the first half and failed to score for almost four minutes. The dry spells hit often, and Ohio struggled to pull away from Cleveland State until midway through the second half.

Turnovers to points

The Bobcats turned the ball over 12 times Saturday, and the Vikings capitalized on those mistakes. The Vikings scored 20 points off of turnovers alone, and often took advantage of sloppy passes to keep the Bobcats’ lead uncomfortable.

Ohio’s struggle with turnovers from last season bled into Saturday. If Ohio can’t buckle down on its primary issue from Saturday, turnovers might become a much larger problem as the season progresses.

@thejackgleckler

jg011517@ohio.edu

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